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Fishing Guides

The fishing guide is the fisherman’s partner. Where the river is deep and the current strong, canoes are the only way to get fishermen from the camp to the pools on the river.

Silver print of Elsie Reford with four guides of the Tobique River showing two salmons.

Elsie Reford and her guides on the Tobique River in New Brunswick

A guide is part coach, part therapist. Some guides talk a lot, others not at all. Many guides have spent their entire lives on the rivers where they guide. They know the river intimately, its curves, currents and its changes over time. They also know how to operate the boats, repair equipment and offer basic first aid.

Silver print of Lady Mount Stephen with two guides showing one spectacular salmon.

Lady Mount Stephen flanked by her guides 

But their primary responsibility is to ensure that every fisherman they are guiding catches a fish. They assist in this process by doing a little or a lot. Not every fisherman knows what he is doing, how to assemble a rod, attach a fly or cast a line. Some rods are beginners and require a great deal of help. Others have hundreds of days of fishing under their belt and simply need a guide to take them to the right place at the right time. Fishing requires hours of casting for every few minutes of elation. The most outstanding quality of a guide is patience.

Silver print of the Estevan Lodge. You can see a Rod Rack to the right of the door and the centre of the building on the facade looking north to the field and the St. Lawrence River.

Estevan Lodge – note the rack for fishing rods on the wall of the veranda